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3. Pollard is obviously one of the most prolific songwriters in the history of indie rock. Given the pace at which he churns out new material, what kind of impact do you think it would have on his career if he were a young artist just starting out today?
Thomas Fekete, Surfer Blood
I think about this a lot. It’s amazing how consistent bands like Pavement, Sonic Youth and Guided By Voices were despite the amount of material they released. It’s very special. It’s cooler to hate a band nowadays. Modern day audiences are very fickle. Maybe we would only have one or two GBV records. What an awful thought!
Andrew Savage, Fergus and Geronimo
I think about this a lot actually. Not just with Robert Pollard, but with other bands too. That’s hard to say, because the impact of that band has so much to do with its time. It was the heyday of fanzines. Whereas blogs tend to cater toward those seeking immediate gratification, it was different back then. I feel like blogs take away the excitement and mystery that got me into music. I think GBV are a band that can only be properly digested through listening to their albums. I can’t guarantee I would pay attention to them if I heard their mp3 streaming on a website. The lure of the written review is what originally sparked my interest in a lot of the music I listen to. Prolific bands like GBV are less daunting when the listener seeks them out in small doses. Though, I can think of a few bands today that are about as prolific as GBV that are able to maintain a good amount of attention (Thee Oh Sees come to mind).
Beth Wawerna, Bird of Youth
I'm not really sure. Part of me wonders if heíd be punished for it. With the rise of blogs and how easy itís become for anyone and everyone to share and talk about musicóoverexposure happens more quickly than it used to, which means backlash happens more quickly than it used to, and sometimes itís difficult to even distinguish between the two. So in that sense, I wonder if people would tire more quickly of someone like Pollard in this day and age simply because heíd be in your face every time you open your browser. But then I could also see the exact oppositeómaybe heíd be heralded as some sort of prolific folk-hero troubadour.
Luther Russell, Producer (Holly Miranda, Laura Marling, Sean Lennon)
As I get older I don’t necessarily buy the idea that being prolific equals great art, but it still impresses, the amount of killer material Pollard has been able to churn out, and I do think that if he were just starting out now, I would hope people would be openminded to all that he has to give as an artist. It’s tougher these days, though, because there are so many more categories and boxes and much shorter attention spans.
Ezra Feinberg, Citay
I think being prolific is a good thing and I wish I was more prolific with Citay, so I think it would be a good thing. But who knows, I mean the music industry is such an insane circus mirror so it’s impossible to tell what is good or bad in terms of “career.” I do think his output is inspiring. Although I can’t say I know everything he’s released (can anyone say that? I’d like to meet that person, for real). I’ve never heard anything I thought was straight-up bad, and mostly it’s good songwriting. I feel more supportive of his attitude of just release what you want to release rather than some strategy for the sake of career.
Emily Ambruso, Grooms
Yikes, that’s tough to say. It would probably help him get his name out there but there’s no telling how it would go from there.